Local record producers fill gap in LDS rock music
Pounding out fat, bluesy riffs, Allen Hughes, stage name “Rocky Utah,” croons his latest composition for the open mic crowd. His rock-trained voice alternately delves to gravely lows or lilts up through his three-octave range as his handmade guitar booms out its unmistakably unique rhythm. Allen sings of love, life, his kids, divorce, overcoming challenges, redemption - all with the underpinning of his faith in Jesus Christ. For years he has been using his music to testify of this faith - what he calls his “Latter-day Saint Christian” philosophy.
When asked by other “mainstream” Christians about his music, he and co-founder Thomas “Dick” Richey used to apologize for the LDS Church’s lack of hard-rocking pop songs. Allen writes a new LDS Christian pop tune almost every month to fill the void left by respected LDS behemoth Deseret Book.
Both Thomas Richey and Allen Hughes are local business consultants, guitarists and singer/songwriters. Thomas has filled many sessions with his smooth guitar sounds and Allen writes regularly with people from Nashville to Hawaii recording, collaborating and pitching his songs as a writer and artist.
When asked by longtime friend Thomas Richey why he didn’t make his own label of “Latter-day Saint Christian” rock and pop styles, he jumped on that idea. They created Testify Records and are collecting input from across the US. Testify is now accepting submissions for future EPs and a Christian album slated for December this year. Go to testifyrecords. com for submission information.
*** Liberty, when it begins to take root, is a plant of rapid growth. - George Washington